Besides perhaps peanut butter and jelly, one of the greatest odd couple food marriages of all time is tomato soup and grilled cheese. The fine folks at Kraft know a thing or three about grilled cheese, as its Singles' are often sandwiched between two slices of bread and dipped into a bowl of creamy tomato soup. Well, imagine that dynamic duo, but now cozily housed within the confines of a dumpling. Yep, for a limited time only, Kraft has teamed up with "Top Chef" finalist and "The Dumpling Queen of Los Angeles," Chef Shirley Chung, and her restaurant Ms Chi Cafe, to create a truly unique collaboration — Kraft Singles' Souplings.
In a press release, Stephanie Vance, brand manager, Kraft Singles said, "Kraft Singles is thrilled to partner with Chef Shirley, known for her celebrations of American classics via unique Chinese fusions, to bring people a playful new way to enjoy the simple, melty flavors of this combo." Chef Chung relished the opportunity as well, saying, "What better way to marry the traditions of Chinese cuisine than with the delightful, simple flavors of Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup?"
So, are the Kraft Singles' Souplings the greatest things since sliced bread... grilled with cheese, and dunked in tomato soup? Or should they be dumped straight into the rubbish bin filled with other good ideas gone bad? I tackled this Kraft-y concoction by cooking some up and giving them a taste. Here are the results of my chew and review.
Some recommendations are based on first-hand impressions of promotional materials and products provided by the manufacturer.
What Do Kraft Singles' Souplings Taste Like?
The Kraft Singles' Souplings started out as an octet of powdery, frozen dumplings. Ten minutes later, with the help of canola oil, water, and steaming, they magically transformed into brown-gold miniature volcanos with a glistening sheen. The Souplings had no aroma, giving me no indication of the good things to come. Thankfully the reality of what's inside ends up being the stuff of dreams.
At first bite, the Souplings were like tiny Hot Pockets that included all that was promised — cheese, bread, and tomato soup. Out of the three elements, the gooey and bright Kraft cheese reigned supreme and, like it often does, became stuck to my teeth.
The cheese oozed out of the bottom of some of my Souplings and created a bonus bit of cheese crisp that was crunchy and tasty. The breading is like seasoned croutons and somehow remains crunchy. That's quite a feat, considering the long journey it took from being made in California, frozen, and then cooked on the opposite coast of America.
Fair warning: The Souplings quickly run cold after cooking. However, hot or not, they are delicious at any temperature. Also, each Soupling can be downed within three bites, so take your time and savor each one.
What Are Kraft Singles' Souplings Made Of?
The Kraft Singles' Souplings are made up of four main components: dumpling wrappers, tomato soup, white bread, and Kraft Singles Cheese. The dumpling wrappers consist of all-purpose flour, water, kosher salt, numeric turmeric powder, tomato powder, and paprika.
The tomato soup is a mix of water, tomato puree, sugar, wheat flour, and vegetable oil, contains less than 2% of salt, potassium salt, whey protein concentrate, cream, citric acid, soy protein concentrate, natural flavoring, celery extract, and garlic oil. The white bread is made up of wheat flour, water, sugar, yeast, soybean and/or canola oil, salt, soy flour, vegetable monoglycerides, calcium propionate, sodium stearoyl-2-lactylate, and sorbic acid. It may contain wheat gluten.
Kraft Singles brings together the talents of cheddar cheese, skim milk, milkfat, milk, milk protein concentrate, whey, calcium phosphate, sodium phosphate, and contains less than 2% of modified food starch, salt, lactic acid, oleoresin paprika for, natamycin (a natural mold inhibitor), enzymes, cheese culture, annatto for color. The cheese contains the allergens gluten and dairy.
Where, When And How To Order Kraft Singles' Souplings
If you find yourself in California, in the Culver City area, there is no reason to wait for a frozen version of the Kraft Singles Souplings to arrive at your door. You can just walk right into Shirley Chung's restaurant, Ms Chi Café, and a batch of six can be cooked up fresh for you right then and there for a total of $15.
For everyone else, including me, we'll have to rely on Goldbelly to bring them into our homes, and into our lives. They are available to purchase now on the site, while supplies last. The Goldbelly package costs $89.95 and includes 16 Souplings; shipping is free. Mine arrived in two plastic containers, with eight in each tray. They ship frozen and remain so with the assistance of dry ice.
The Final Verdict
America is a wondrous land where cultures and cuisines intertwine, conjuring up new, creative, and delectable twists on familiar dishes. The Kraft Singles' Souplings are a perfect modern example of living up to that idea. By taking the established marriage of tomato soup and grilled cheese and housing it under wraps in the shell of a Chinese dumpling, it creates something even more American than it ever was before. Chef Chung should be proud of herself for using her heritage and culinary skills to cook up a novel way to enjoy an old classic, which can bring us all a bit of comfort (food) as the weather gets colder.
While the Souplings were tasty, I was surprised that there didn't seem to be much tomato soup inside a thing called a "Soupling." I thought maybe the soup would come gushing out in a bite, as it does with other soup dumplings, but that just wasn't the case here. Maybe it's because tomato soap is naturally creamier and less brothy than the soups normally found in dumplings. Or perhaps the bread absorbed most of whatever tomato soup was in there in the first place? Who knows. This is a note, not a knock, as the Kraft Singles' Souplings are a triumph. The only real complaint is that eight to an order is not nearly enough. Sharing is caring, but perhaps you should enjoy these babies all by your lonesome.
Read the original article on Daily Meal.